Setting out from the railway station in Piazza Libertà and turning down Corso Cavour, you can reach the Canal Grande. The Canal was dug in 1756 to allow merchant ships to unload their goods but is now almost blocked, due partly to the fixed bridge hindering the passage of sailing boats and allowing access to small boats only.
The Canal is crossed by a renowned bridge called Ponterosso (Red Bridge) – after which the whole area has been named. It is flanked by fine buildings such as Palazzo Carciotti and bordered on the background by the Church of Sant’Antonio Taumaturgo.
Going on with the sea to your right, you can see the Hotel de Ville on the left, followed by the Greek-orthodox Church of San Nicolò and Tommaseo Square, where the famous historic Caffè Tommaseo was once the centre of patriotic turmoil and is now frequented by artists. Then, after leaving the Molo Audace (Audace Pier) on your right, you will reach the wide Piazza Unità d’Italia, one of the most amazing places in town.
Nowadays, imposing buildings beautifully surround the magnificent, enormous square. The City Hall, built in 1872, stand out in the background. Palazzo Modello, built in 1870, Casa Stratti, where the historical Caffè degli Specchi was inaugurated in 1839 (recently completely renewed), and the Government House are on the northeastern side of the square. Palazzo Pitteri and the Lloyd Triestino building – the most ancient navigation company in Italy and one of the most ancient in the world – are on the opposite side.
From Piazza Unità d’Italia you can then take a stroll through the picturesque, narrow streets of Cavana, the typical old town; otherwise, you can reach the close Piazza della Borsa (Stock-exchange Square), where the imposing Chamber of Commerce building is, with its deep pronaos and huge allegoric statues. The square is where Corso Italia (aka ‘Corso’) starts: it is the main arterial street of the city, flanked by interesting buildings. Piazza Goldoni can then be reached, where several streets converge and from which the Scala dei Giganti, a staircase leading to San Giusto, departs.
Close to the Piazza is Via Carducci. This is one of the main streets of the city, built on the bed of a stream that was completely filled-in in 1850. It is characterized by imposing buildings and a majestic wideness framed by trees. The Austrian style dominating the Trieste of the Eighteenth Century can also be found in the several fine avenues departing from it, like Viale XX Settembre – which is also called ‘Viale’ (Avenue) or ‘Acquedotto’ (Waterworks) since that is where the Theresian waterworks ran.